For two decades, Tom Beerman earned national recognition as perhaps Indiana's most talented volleyball player.
Tom Beerman was such a fantastic player that IPFW men's coach Arnie Ball said that the Hoagland native was "The best volleyball player ever from Indiana."
What about Ball's son and U.S. National Team starting setter Lloy?
"Tom was the best player ever from this state," Ball said again. "He could play and start at any position -- passer, setter or middle hitter, and he could dominate a match from any position."
As a testament to Beerman's greatness, in 1970 he was named a first-team U.S. Volleyball Association All-American. He was the only non-California player to be named that year, and was the first in more than 20 years.
Beerman played baseball and basketball at Indiana Tech before transferring to Ball State in 1960. He was named the Midwest Intercollegiate Volleyball Association's Most Valuable Player in 1963. He later played with the U.S. National Team in 1966, 1969 and 1970. He was also part of an AAU national championship team in 1974, and was a member of a national runner-up Golden-Masters team in 1988.
As a coach, Beerman had an outstanding career. He coached Wayne High School to the state finals in 1974, and led Snider to state titles in 1987 and 1991. During seven seasons at Snider, his squads won six sectional titles, four regionals and two semistates. While at Wayne, Bishop Luers and Snider, his teams combined for a 313-28 record.
"I'll remember watching the young players develop into good players and the good players develop into excellent ones," Beerman said on his retirement in 1994.